For a while it was simple enough: Daniel Handler was a writer, and “Lemony Snicket” was the name he wrote under when he was writing a series of Gorey-esque y.a. novels. But now he’s written a holiday-themed children’s book as Lemony Snicket, and when your alter ego is taking on a full-fledged literary career with diversionary side projects and everything, that’s weird, right? Like, did Handler know when he was writing the book that it would be a Snicket? And why do I lean so heavily on rhetorical questions as a way of making a point? Is it just that I’m too lazy to explore my own vague suppositions?
Anyway, macabre author of kids’ book Lemony Snicket has written a holiday-themed picture book, illustrated by Lisa Brown, that takes its inspiration from the traditional potato pancake so frequently eaten at Hannukah festivities. (But wasn’t Hannukah yesterday? Yes. But it happens that the holiday is like eleven or twelve days long. The more you know…) The book is called The Latke Who Couldn’t Stop Screaming, and it is the perfect gift for the niece or nephew that’s already successfully anthropomorphized his or her way into vegetarianism, and now swears that you can hear carrots crying out in pain as you chop them up.
Daniel Handler will be appearing at McNally Robinson tonight (in character? who the fuck knows), with Lisa Brown, to read and show slides from the book, which will be prominently displayed in the store so you remember to buy it afterwards. Holiday shopping, guys, catch the magic.